August 8, 2020

Savanadurga Trek

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Adventure group: Bangalore ASCENDers (BASC) – Website link: www.bangaloreascenders.org

Event Date: 15th December 2012

Team Size: 11 ASCENDers

Difficulty Level: Easy/Moderate

Trek Distance: Around 6 Kms.

Distance from Bangalore: Depends on route which you take from Bangalore.

About the Place:

Along with Savanadurga, We visited nearby palces like Mukthi Naga Temple, Big Banyan Tree and Manchanbele Dam.

  1. Savanadurga Magadi: Savandurga is a hill 60 km west of Bangalore (Karnataka, India) off the Magadi road. The hill is considered to be among the largest monolith hills in Asia. The hill rises to 1226 m above mean sea level and forms a part of the Deccan plateau. It consists of peninsular gneiss, granites, basic dykes and laterites. The Arkavathi river passes nearby through the Thippagondanahalli reservoir and on towards Manchanabele dam.

    History of savanadurga: Savanadurga is formed by two hills known locally as Karigudda (black hill) and Biligudda (white hill). The earliest record of the name of the hill is from 1340 AD by Hoysala Ballala III from Madabalu where it is called Savandi. Another view is that the name is originated fromSamantadurga attributed to a Samantharaya, a governor under Ahchutaraya at Magadi, although there is no inscription confirming this. This was the secondary capital of the Magadi rulers such as Kempegowda. From 1638 to 1728, Mysore took over this place and Dalavayi Devaraja occupied this place with the palace at Nelapattana. In 1791 Lord Cornwallis captured it from Tipu Sultan’s forces during the Third Anglo-Mysore War. Robert Home in his Select views in Mysore (1794) shows distant views of the hill from Bangalore.He called it Savinadurga or the fort of death. There were no steps to reach the hill top and it was covered by bamboos and other trees forming a barricade.Megalithic burial urns have been found in the area. Saavana in Sanskrit also means three time rituals.

  2. Mukthi Naga Temple: Shri Mukthi Naga Kshetra has long been home to the Serpent Deity. For the past 200 years, the residents of this region have been referring to this place as “Junjappana Bayalu” (Junjappa’s Field). In accordance with Lord Subrahmanya’s divine will, the construction of the Mukthi Naga Temple is being carried out at this place.This place, which is a veritable abode of serpents, is a haven of peace and serenity to all who come here. Temple is situated at Ramohalli, 18 kilometers from the Bangalore bus stand. It is located 5 kilometers from the Bangalore-Mysore road, after one passes Kengeri, on the way to the Big Banyan Tree. One kilometer from the Ramohalli bus stand is the place where Mukthi Naga Temple is present.
  3. BIG Banyan Tree: The Doda Alada Mara (also spelled Dodda Alada Mara), literally translated to Big Banyan Tree, is a giant Banyan tree located in the village of Ramohalli, near kengeri approximately 28 kilometers west of the city of Bangalore, Karnataka, India. This single plant covers 3 acres and is one of the largest of its kind. It is said to be at least 400 years old.A few years back, the main root of the tree succumbed to natural disease, and thus the tree looks like many different trees now.
  4. Manchanabele dam:Also spelled Manchanbele, Manchinabele, Manchinbele dam. A small reservoir, 40kms from bangalore, this Dam is build for the irrigation purpose, now it also provide water to the Magadi Town, this Dam is build across the river Arkavathi, the land which covered for irrigation under this project is called “Thore saalu” because all the villages comes on the two sides of river arkavathi, in kannada “thore” means river and “saalu” means line. This place is good for your week end refreshment, also a well known film shooting place. Please avoid swimming in the back water, Just enjoy the nature. Kayaking is conducted here.

Day in Brief:

All of us started our journey from Shantala Silk house around 7:45 AM. On the way all of us had most important part of the event “self-introduction” in VAN. Reached a Hotel around  8:30 AM where all of us had nice Breakfast.

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Breakfast at hotel

After filling up our empty stomach, started  towards Savanadurga around 9:15 – 9:20 AM. Meanwhile, I never thought we will visit Mukthi Naga Temple in this treknic. It was bit of surprise for me..:). Reached temple around 10:00 AM and spent some time (This temple visit is suggested by driver). Also had our group photo here.

Started towards Big Banyan tree around 10:25 AM. It is only near by from temple so reached the place within 10 minutes (This place is more of park and good for morning walk). Spent 20 minutes here and had couple of group photos.

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Big board at Big Banyan tree
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Aerial view of Big Banyan tree

Then on the way we visited a hotel from where we all parceled Lemon rice for lunch.

Then continued our journey towards Savanadurga. Here we got one more place to explore that is “Manchanabele Dam”. Entrance gate being opened. I think it is our lucky day, since visiting the place is prohibited. Reached dam around 11:25 – 11:30 AM and spent 10 minutes here. From this place we can get clear view of Savanadurga hill – View is breath taking!!!

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Beautiful view of Manchanabele Dam
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Huge river at Manchanabele Dam

It was already 11:45 AM, We had one more photo session here and started towards “Savandurga Hill”.

On the way, we had coconut water at the entrance gate of Savanadurga Magadi. It was Yummy. Trust me…usually we won’t get such kind of good one in Bangalore.

Reached base of  Savanadurga hill around 12:15 PM and started our trek to the Asia’s largest Monolithic hill.

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Savanadurga

Trek was supposed to be easy but we made our-self little difficult by not taking the usual trail.

We had very interesting group, we didn’t feel tiredness even in that hot sun. On the way to the top, we will get one  Kallu Mantapa ( which is a nice place to cook and stay in night. If anyone planning for night trek, then this place is not a bad option).

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Kallu Mantapa

Reached the top of the hill around 1:45 – 2:00 PM  after couple of breaks in between while climbing the rock.

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Nandi on top of the hill

Note: While reaching the peak one has to cross over the big rocks where you get the feel of caves. Also we will get very good view of ”Narasimha Swamy temple” from the top.

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View of Narasimha Swamy temple from top
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View of Arkavathi river from top

We finished our lunch along with another trip of lemon juice made by Niranjan(3 cheers to him for preparing the juice)….:)

Started descending after couple of group photos. Mean while we all had a small nap on the way near “Kallu Mantapa” between 3:00 – 3:45 PM and reached base of the hill around 5:00 PM.

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Savanadurga Magadi entrace gate

It was time for snacks for all of us. Meanwhile couple of them visited “Narasimha Swamy Temple” and  “Veerabhadra Swamy Temple”. Then started back towards Bangalore around 6:30 PM.

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Temple at the base

On the way, we had one more round of coconut water and i got down at Bashyam circle around 8:30 PM.

Thanksgiving:

  • As an Organizer, Niranjan did excellent job. He is fun loving, took care of each one in the trek and guided all of us in right direction.
  • Also Special thanks to him for organizing one day Trek to Savanadurga (Asia’s Biggest Monolithic Hill) and appreciate your effort for organizing this trek since BASC is going to this Hill 1st time(No one arranged trek to this hill earlier from BASC).
  • I want thank each and everyone who are all part of this treknic for making this one memorable.
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